Natural Science at the Crossroads: A Lecture by Rudolf Steiner
Berlin, October 17, 1907 (CW 56)
In this 1907 lecture, Natural Science at the Crossroads, Rudolf Steiner outlines in some detail the development of natural science that highlights its vital achievements while at the same time emphasizing the tragic error of its materialistic interpretation of reality.
The 2020 publishing of this lecture is timely as it will speak to all who are concerned that the future of human civilization depends on blazing a middle path that affirms the essential contribution of science at a time when it is under attack by anti-science rhetoric and policies, while at the same time, clarifies where and how the inherent limitations of natural science call for the ever-wider fostering of spiritual science.
About the Author
Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925) was born in the small village of Kraljevec, Austro-Hungarian Empire (now in Croatia), where he grew up (see right). As a young man, he lived in Weimar and Berlin, where he became a well-published scientific, literary, and philosophical scholar, known especially for his work with Goethe’s scientific writings. At the beginning of the twentieth century, he began to develop his early philosophical principles into an approach to systematic research into psychological and spiritual phenomena. Formally beginning his spiritual teaching career under the auspices of the Theosophical Society, Steiner came to use the term Anthroposophy (and spiritual science) for his philosophy, spiritual research, and findings. The influence of Steiner’s multifaceted genius has led to innovative and holistic approaches in medicine, various therapies, philosophy, religious renewal, Waldorf education, education for special needs, threefold economics, biodynamic agriculture, Goethean science, architecture, and the arts of drama, speech, and eurythmy. In 1924, Rudolf Steiner founded the General Anthroposophical Society, which today has branches throughout the world. He died in Dornach, Switzerland.